Trading And Investing In & Out Africa

ISSUE 70 - VOL 1
FEBRUARY 15 - MARCH 14, 2005

Dr. Bienvenu-Magloire Quenum
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On February 5, 2005 a potentate died in West Africa. The man who ruled Togo for 38 years nonstop died "unexpectedly" of heart attack. Rumors had it for months that he was sick. However, his death came as a surprise to the Togolese people and to West Africa's citizens.

He was the horrendous character in the background of Ahmadou Kourouma' s corrosive novel / fiction titled in French "En attendant le vote des bÍtes sauvages" - Awaiting For The Votes of The Wild Beasts.

He seized power in 1967 and established an iron-fist power over Togo. Year after year, he hijacked state power piece by piece for the benefit of his own family and his inner circle of people from his native Lama-Kara region in the North-Center easterly part of Togo.

He transformed the Military into a clan institution in which were enlisted only people from Lama-Kara and surrounding areas. High positions in the Army being reserved to fellows of his native village: Pira.

He took control of the state machine appointing top civil servants devoted to the clan.

During the 1990's when Togolese tried to root him out of power, he resisted the upheaval through intimidation and severe repression. His soldiers used to fire right into the crowd during rallies organized by the opposition parties. Finally, the pacific Togolese people were tetanized and kept quite suffering in silence.

Ironically, at the same time, he managed to establish himself as a peace broker on the African political scene, jumping on the slightest occasion to propose his service to break peace and solving crisis in other African countries.

He was proud of his self attributed title of "le Doyen" - the African ruler that stayed much longer in power.


The bad governance practices and human rights' violations above briefly outlined were common knowledge. Still, the international community and leaders of big powers - particularly France, let it go. The man was visited, invited, received and honored as head of state - worldwide.

However, the international community peevishly reacted when, in the 1990's, Eyadema's despotism goes a step further in brutal repression and mass killing. Score of decapitated bodies were washed out by sea water and rejected on Togo's beaches.

In 1993, France, Germany and the United States of America imposed economic sanctions; freezing financial aids to press for democratic reforms.

In 1998, the European Union also imposed economic sanctions. A joint UN organization of African Unity panel, set up to investigate Amnesty International allegations that several hundred people were killed after controversial elections in 1998, concluded in 2001 that there had been systematic violations of human rights.

In spite of all said sanctions, the regime continued on the same repressive path as if nothing happened. Intimidation of opponents, corruption and assassinations of political leaders and common citizens remained daily occurrences in the Ubuesque republic of Togo.

He attempted to assassinate his main political opponent Gilchrist Olympio ahead of 1993's presidential ballot. Mr. Gilchrist Olympio campaign motorcade came in 1992 under fire, which left five people in his entourage dead and 17 others including himself injured.

Gilchrist Olympio is the son of Togo's first elected president that Eyadema eliminated physically in 1963's coup.

Under Eyadema's lengthy rule (38 years) per Capita Gross National Product's evolution remained flat (around US$ 375 a year in average). In short the economy never took off to boosting the developing of the country. However, his own clan became filthy rich.


Global sanctions enforced by the international community against Togo worsened the economic situation. The number of Togolese people living with less than one dollar a day sharply increased during the 1990's to reaching now 80% of the population in year 2004.

Eyadema and his followers do not care. They were not hurt by sanctions imposed by the international community. They stacked billions of dough, living VIP life, private jetting around the world. In the meantime, the populations were surviving having a meal a day.

In 2002, Parliament altered 1992's constitution, removing a clause that forbid Eyadema to run for the presidency three times in a raw. He then rigged 2003's presidential ballot to winning the presidential election. The international community stayed put and the man continued ruling as he wishes.

Truly, global economic sanctions, cancellation of financial aids and protracted inquiries about human rights' violations are not the adequate answers to root out and remove from power rulers who make mockery of democracy.

Such kinds of sanctions only hurt the bulk of the populations. The rulers themselves are not scratched. They continue having daily Champaign parties, traveling around as they wish, not concerned with the suffering of the citizens.


One thing is sure: If the international community - the African Union and the UN in particular - do not restore the constitutional law in Togo (election within 60 days after the death of the ruling president under the supervision of the Parliament's president) there is no doubt that another disaster is building up in West Africa.

After Liberia, Sierra Leone and Ivory Coast, Togo will be joining soon the inferno. And, then, UN would be staging something like UNFIT (United Nations Forces In Togo) that will cost billions of money, which should normally be spent to develop the Economy and not to extinguish fires set by bad rulers.

The situation in the Republic of Guinea (Conakry) is not far from the one existing in Togo. An ailing president is clinging to power; his followers exercising a dictatorship power against political opponents, appropriating Guinea's meager financial means for their sole profit. In the meantime, the global economy, which had never took off since the independence 48 years ago, is in recession; the populations sinking deep in poverty.

These kinds of catastrophic politic and economic situations prevailing in several African countries that Archbishop Desmond Tutu described as "a huge blot to Africa's record" (speaking specifically on February 6, 2005 of Mugabe's Zimbabwe) must be stopped by the international community from the first telling signs of human rights' violation.

Early prevention will cost less than late humanitarian interventions to assist millions of refugees fleeing their home because of civil wars resulting from catastrophic political and economic situations created by bad rulers' governance practices.


It is now time for the UN to start exercising pressure on the regimes of Togo, Zimbabwe and Conakry and any other one that is making mockery of democracy in Africa. Click here for countries briefs

After two warnings within a short span of time (less than six months), the UN' Security Council should vote for sanctions that should be immediately enforced and strictly applied to the rulers.

No need to send foreign troops. Sanctions such as bank accounts blocking - inland and abroad; restriction to travel abroad and seizure of properties abroad will do job and be less costly in human life and financial means.

The fear to loose billions of money they stack away and the prospect to be secluded within the walls of their palaces will instill some wisdom into bad rulers' obtuse brains.

The right for the international community to interfere in the internal affairs of countries, which rulers turned their back to the main responsibility to developing the economy is an unquestionable humanitarian right.

The political crisis in Togo created by the death of a despot and the grapple of power by his son will tell everyone if African Union's leaders are serious about their organization or if all is just meetings, talks and no effective decisions. Let us hope they are and would take the lead proposing sanctions against bad African rulers.

Africa's credibility to obtaining financial assistance from the international community to boost its developing is at stake. The world is watching.

"CONTRIBUTOR'S GUIDELINES" are available here. We invite you to contribute to AFRICABIZ ONLINE MONTHLY ISSUE - with articles related to "How Africa Could Bridge The Developing Gap".

Many thanks for subscribing to Africabiz. See you here on March 15, 2005.

Dr. B.M. Quenum
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More on Togo's crisis

Business Opportunities


An efficient chicken breeding operation in any African country cannot be specialized in a unique production like in developed countries where operations use to breed either only broilers or layers. An operation that intends to supply an African community should cover the whole demand of the population that is provide broilers and eggs, which means that the operation should breed a mixture of broilers and layers as here exposed.

The production organized as explained by the above link would need investment level briefly outlined in following table:

(US$ x 1,000)

1- Land and buildings: Land acquisition and preparation, broilers breeding park, layers breeding park, warehouse, water well, water tower. Etc.


2- Processing Equipment: Immersing water pump, power generator (12 SKVA), equipment for broilers, equipment for layers, a pick-up van, an atomizer. Etc.


3- Other Equipment: Electrical bulbs, plastic boxes, handling equipment, sprayers, offices equipment, miscellaneous


4- Starting expenses: Feasibility study / Business Plan - startup technical assistance (for six months).


Total investment


In next delivery we shall consider operating expenses in details about managing a medium scale chicken breeding operation that produce broilers and eggs and deliver up to 50,000 birds per year to the slaughterhouse.

1- Poultry Breeding and Genetics
by R.D. Crawford
2- The Dollar Hen: The Classic Guide to American Free-Range Farming.
by Milo M. Hastingd, Robert Plamondon
3- Small-Scale Poultry-Keeping: A Guide To Free-Range Poultry Production.
By Ray Feltwell
4- The Encyclopedia of Farm Animal Nutrition
by M.F. Fuller, et al
5- The Mating and Breeding of Poultry
by Harry M. Lamon, Rob R. Slocum.
6- Modern Livestock and Poultry Production
by James R. Gillespie

7- Success With Baby Chicks: A Complete Guide to Hatchery Selection
by Robert Plamondon.
8- The Classic Guide To Poultry Nutrition:
Chickens, Turkeys, Ducks, Geese, Gamebirds, and Pigeons.
By Gustave F. Hauser
9- The Strange History of The Ostrich
In Fashion, Food and Fortune.
By Rob Nixon
10- Ostrich's Avian Incubation: Behaviour, Environment and Evolution.
By D. Charles Deeming

More on the Investment Briefs

Control Your Desktop


Webmasters and designers are always in search for the best color set. Sometimes they just want to pick a color they found on a webpage on the World Wild Web. There are score and score of color pickers floating in the WWW and amongst them a little bird that does the job of eagles - as the best color picker: Pixie

Pixie is an extremely easy-to-use, slim (only 8 kb) and yet effective color picker. Its features include a mouse tracker. Run it, simply point to a color and it will tell you the hex, RGB, HTML, CMYK and HSV values of that color.

Believe me there is no better color picker and the other bulky ones cannot perform as Pixie. You will get the exact color you spotted on a webpage when you use the hex, RGB, HTML, CMYK and HSV values provided by Pixie. And most important it is free! Click here to get Pixie

Click here for another color picker

Freebie Of The Month


The month's freebie is about the Dangerous World of Peer-to-Peer Files Sharing. We'll like you to know about the dangers and pitfalls behind the marvelous world of files sharing.

Files sharing is à la mode and millions of people enjoy sharing MP3 music files, videos and movies on the Internet.

Apart from the legal side of the undertaking there are other dangers and pitfalls for those who thrive in the files sharing "business". You are certainly aware of the litigation encountered by a father whose teenager daughter downloaded 6,000 thousand of MP3 files and who was obliged to pay 6,000 bucks to settle the case. Huh!

But litigation about copyright is not the only pitfall.

Ever heard of Rogue sites? When you visit one during files sharing' session you may regret it for the rest of your life. They can drop malicious viruses and Trojans into your system by-passing virus clients and even Firewalls and hijack your computer. It will take you months to recover from the infection unless you purchase a new system.

Scarring? Just read The Dangerous World of Peer-to-Peer Files Sharing as described by a very interesting article available here on


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